My dear friends,
I've been putting off writing this update, hoping that I can provide you with more details. However, even though I don't have all the details yet, I know that I need to share with you as you've been journeying with me for the past three years.
As I have been considering the area of stewardship recently, I started evaluating my own role in ministry, and whether or not I was being a good steward of God’s gifts to me through my role at ELI.
I believe God is calling me in a different direction, an area of more teaching and mentoring, an area where I can use that which God has been teaching me over the past several years in order to challenge others.
As I spent time seeking God's guidance, he lay the following passages on my heart:
2 Tim 1:6
... I remind you to stir up [rekindle, fan into flame]
the gift of God
that is within you...
1 Tim 4:14
neglect the gift
that is within you...
1 Pet 4:10
Like good stewards
of the manifold grace of God,
serve one another
with whatever gift
each of you has received.
Trust in the LORD
for in the LORD God
an everlasting rock.
The LORD your God
who goes before you
is the one who will fight for you,
just as he did in Egypt [SA, Taiwan, US, Kenya]
before your very eyes,
and in the wilderness [of Kenya],
where you saw how the LORD your God carried you,
... until you reached this place.
There are several ministries I am looking into, and I would appreciate your prayers for guidance and clarity.
As I've been praying about the changes (and in particular about resigning prior to having another position!), God lay the picture on my heart of a bridge across a river. Except, the bridge is not yet built. As I step out in faith, I believe God will put the planks in place. In this, I have found solace in passages such as Ps. 18 (specifically verse 36) and Isaiah 43: 1-5a.
This week, I get to pack up my personal belongings at Kipkaren and say good-bye to the staff and children. I'll then go to Ilula, first of all to host the second annual children's day event on Saturday.
Next week, I'll be saying good-bye to our friends in Ilula, after which I'll be driving to Nairobi, from where I will continue the job search. I will visit various ministries and will let you know as soon as I know what's next. I am not only looking in Kenya, but am also interviewing ministries in other places.
Thank you for your support in the past three years, and thank you for your continued support as I step out to follow the One who calls us.
In His service,
Questions you may have:
1. Will you continue to help the Sifuna family?
For the time being, yes. The goal is not to have them be dependent on me, but be self-sufficient. One of you recently sent me a gift which I'll be using to purchase a cow for the family. That would provide them with a daily source of income.
2. What happens to your house?
The house in Ilula has been used for visitors. It will remain the property of ELI, and they will continue to use it to host visitors. The house in Kipkaren will be turned into an office, and the furniture will be dispersed among ELI Kipkaren ministries.
3. What about the car?
While I'm continuing my job search from Nairobi, I will be able to use the vehicle. After that, ELI will decide how they can best put it to use.
4. And Flannel?
I have found a very good home for her with the kids in Ilula. In fact, when I told Hillary and his siblings that their parents had agreed for them to have Flannel, the room exploded with cheers. They will take very good care of her.
5. Who will do your work at ELI?
I've been working with a team of Kenyans to train them as a hospitality team. Other missionaries, too, will be stepping up and helping with the debriefing and challenges of having a team on the ground. Staff at the US office will be taking over the newsletters, while missionaries at Kipkaren will maintain the ELI blogs.
6. What about your support? Do we keep sending support to ELI?
I greatly appreciate your ongoing support. I will let you know as soon as possible where you and I will be going next.